What your body experiences when you quit smoking What your body experiences when you quit smoking

Once people stop smoking, the benefits to their health gradually improves, day by day.

Smoking just one cigarette is enough to cause damage to the body. Quitting not only offers wellbeing, it actually improves your health. (Related article: Quit smoking: make it a goal).

In collaboration with Harvard University, Jairo Arturo Noreña Velásquez (a doctor and surgeon from the University of Antioquia) is currently conducting clinical research on diabetes and cognitive impairment for his postdoctoral studies. According to Dr. Noreña, once a person stops smoking, the body benefits greatly: less wrinkles are formed, circulation improves, lung capacity increases, the risk of developing cancer is reduced, the skin and the hair receive more oxygen, blood circulates better through the body’s organs, and the bones become stronger. As Noreña Velásquez explains, the following benefits occur after quitting this habit:

–         After 20 minutes, blood pressure and heart rates return to normal.

–         After 8 hours, the oxygen saturation in the lungs improves.

–         After 48 hours, the sense of taste and smell return to normal.

–         After 72 hours, respiratory function returns to normal.

–         After 6 months, the risk of catching the common cold reduces.

–         After 1 year, the chances of getting a heart attack are reduced by 50%.

–         After 4 years, the risk of suffering from heart disease is the same as that of nonsmokers.

–         After 10 years, the risk of developing lung cancer is reduced.

A few tips to quit smoking:

“There is no safe number of cigarettes you can smoke. Just one is enough to cause damage in the body. Try storing them in a place that is difficult to access, do not buy full packs, change to the brand that you like the least, draw a line halfway up the cigarette before lighting it and only smoke up to that point, and hold it with the filter away from you and with your non-dominant hand, this will make smoking more uncomfortable and less desirable.”

Also read: Just say no to tobacco! Follow these tips to quit smoking (video in Spanish).